The thirty-nine poems of anima bring a distinctive, archetypal potency to the closing stages of Mario Petrucci’s larger i tulips project, the 1111-strong sequence in which this sub-sequence crucially sits.
Arising organically from prior modernist experiment, Petrucci’s style nevertheless remains utterly contemporary. His mastery of the shape and sound of each poem makes for an intense and all-consuming experience, refocusing an array of influences through an acute lyrical sensibility. By yielding so completely to the power of linguistic transformation, these searing, necessary poems capture both the crisis and the beauty of the heart’s innermost voyage.
“Mario Petrucci’s anima is a revelation of the underside of a human heart submitting to the contradictions of love, doubt and mortality. This remarkable work reconfigures the soul as well as the mind, through language that shapes the ineffable into a visceral, triumphant poetry.”
Alexandra Burack, American poet and educator
“The tensile delicacy of Petrucci’s lines springs back with a very English baroque, Miltonic surprise: sense-ambush occurs in the next line, skewering what's gone before. Between these line-breaks rests a declamatory silence tested to snapping. This is major work to cast shadows.”
Álvaro de Campos [tr. Simon Jenner]
“With a brio and tenderness all of their own, these new lyric poems are modernist marvels, word sculptures pared to their very essence… Petrucci’s tulips promise to grow into a truly ambitious landmark body of work.”
Poetry Book Society Bulletin
"Reminiscent of ee cummings at his best... vivid, generous and life-affirming."
Mario Petrucci aspires to "Poetry on a geological scale" (Verse), whether exploring the tragedies of Chernobyl (Heavy Water, 2004) or immersing himself in heart-rending invention (i tulips, 2010).